One of the major marketing strategies many companies undertake is to build brand recognition and awareness.
What does that mean exactly? Rather than using tactics that have a direct and immediate impact on sales, building brand awareness is more of a long-game strategy — it helps companies create a following and boost recognition amongst their target audience. Through brand awareness, their audience eventually associates their company with a specific product or service.
For example, many of us in the general population thinks of tissues when someone mentions the Kleenex brand — that’s fantastic brand awareness.
And while building that kind of visibility may seem like a daunting task, one concrete way to increase your brand’s authority online and create more digital brand awareness is through search engine optimization (SEO).
While SEO is a complicated and in-depth strategy to tackle, brands who want to boost their online authority can use a few of the following tactics to start making an impact.
Establish Your Specialty
To boost your online visibility, it actually helps to create your topical expertise — then own it. Most industries these days are competitive. But specializing in a niche, and establishing that expertise online, can really help differentiate your organization.
This hyper-focused content that targets your niche better caters to your specific audience and allows them to connect better with your brand. For example, if you’re selling custom-designed dresses, you don’t want to target keyword phrases like “dresses” or “gowns” — you’d be better off targeting “custom dresses,” or a similar phrase. Do your research via tools like Google’s Keyword Planner tool to see what keyword phrases best match with your product or service.
That means you should clearly define your company’s identity to your audience with branded (and keyword optimized) content. That includes website content and blog posts that follow SEO best practices and speak to your audience. Also, try targeting keywords in every step of the selling cycle for your industry. While going after general keywords can help get new customers at the top of your sales funnel, ensure you’re addressing customer concerns and pain points at every stage of your sales/marketing funnel. Again, this helps build your brand authority and positions you as a leader in your industry.
Embrace Link Building
If you’ve ever dabbled in SEO best practices, you’ve likely heard of link building strategies.
While paid search is an important part of any SEO strategy, link building is an excellent way to build your visibility online through organic means. Essentially, that means that other trusted sites are linking to your site.
That could include links from bloggers and other company websites — which are indications of trust and authority to Google. You can ask to guest blog on other sites and link back to yours, or simply reach out to offer a link exchange.
In addition to serving as an excellent organic brand-building exercise, link building on other sites is also a great way to tap into other relevant audiences. This provides additional brand awareness and drives more qualified traffic back to your site.
To accomplish this, identify the top sites and publishers for topics in your industry (use a tool like Linkio, Alexa, or SEMRush), then engage them and participate in their communities. Offer to do a content swap, a guest post on their site, and leave comments that include links back to your site.
Participate in Online Communities
To create additional brand awareness, another effective tactic is to participate in online communities discussing topics relevant to your industry. Whether that’s the appropriate thread on Reddit, social media channels, GrowthHackers, and StumbleUpon.
Engaging with other members of your industry’s community again positions you as a trustworthy authority. It also increases your digital footprint and helps your visibility in search as you link to your brand’s site across social platforms and engage users on each site.
While there are plenty of SEO tactics that can increase brand awareness, these aforementioned three strategies will help get you started.
Be sure to check out our upcoming Search Engine Marketing Certificate Course.